Monday, June 22, 2009


"It is a burnt offering to the Lord; it is a sweet aroma, an offering made by fire to the Lord." (Exodus 29:18 NKJV).

Now what does that verse have to do with laughter? I don't know! I don't see it either!!!! But after I read this verse I had visions of my adult children laughing!!!!! Now I don't know what you think of visions, but I just saw, with my mind's eye, images of each of my children really having a good laugh. It was so beautiful to me!

The first was Caleb. He was laughing and his eyes were just shining with joy. Then Luke's face flashed before my eyes! And he was really, really laughing! Then Josiah, Josh, and Ashli followed, each one just bubbling with healthy, contagious, laughter! It was like a sweet aroma to me this morning! I couldn't help but feel joy rise in my heart as I meditated on my children's happy faces. 

Many times laughter has been the glue that has held our family together. Every time we vacationed stresses would nearly overtake our journey. Especially for me. It was a huge job getting all seven of us somewhere, even to church on Sunday mornings! But to pack for a week was HUGE. 

The task was daunting for a woman who does not major in organizational skills! I would usually despair before we were in the car, usually having lost my desire to travel at all. But since everything would finally be in the car, off we would go. I could not bear the thought of unpacking right then either! 

With five kids and four of them boys, you can probably imagine some of our mishaps and misfortunes! Some were unimaginable!  It was absolutely crazy sometimes!!!! 

But night would come and we would all settle in a motel room. There would not even be room to make a path to the bathroom, the floor was completely carpeted in kids. We would all be snuggled in and then it would start. 

Someone would bring up an event from the day and the giggles would begin. Then another would remember something, that possibly wasn't even funny at the time, but reflection would bring near hysteria to the situation, and volatile laughter would just explode! This would go on and on until at we would get a call or a knock on the door from the hotel staff telling us that they were getting complaints about us! Our neighbors were wondering what kind of party we were having anyway! We should be restrained before we caused considerable damage to hotel property. 

Well, this made it even more difficult to control ourselves. Have you ever gotten the giggles when the situation was supposed to be serious, and you just couldn't help yourself? If so, you can relate to our dilemma. Their call would only fuel the fire of our giddiness. Oh, we were in trouble! Deep trouble! Again!!!!

Looking back, I don't remember all of the places that we took our dear ones, or their responses. However, I will never forget the laughter we shared every time we journeyed from home. It would not have been the same if we had not been all piled in the same room! That was the most fun we ever had on any of our trips away. 

My mom was having a tough day yesterday. It was Father's Day. We buried her older brother last week. My dad and her dad (grandpa) are both gone. It is kind of a hard day for that reason.

 Well, Scotty decided to lighten up the whole situation. He had been outside working on my wandering rose bushes and he came in disgustingly sweaty. His shirt could have been wrung out, leaving a puddle. So instead of just taking it off, he took it off like he was doing a striptease act, swinging his little behind, and humming a little tune. My mom laughed so hard I thought she was going to wet her pants! And she was sitting next to me!!!! He does these kinds of things all the time to make me laugh, but I have never seen him so bold as to do his little dance in front of our parents.

For those of you with vulgar imaginations, he was not gross! Our parents are not into gross! He was just funny!!!! 

Well, he enjoyed the laughter so much, he just kept up his antics!!! He didn't remove any more clothing, but he continued to be silly! It was good! It was funny! He left the room finally and returned in a fresh clean shirt. A whole lot of heaviness that had hung in the air had seemed to depart with him and he returned to a fresh new environment. 

Laughter is good for the soul. There are healing powers in our laughter. It is good to laugh at oneself. These are not really scriptures, but there are scriptures about laughter. Do you have a favorite scripture about laughter? Or how about a favorite funny moment?  I hope that you do!I would love to hear your stories. Please share!

I hope you have many reasons to laugh today!!! 

Many blessings to you, friends!

Thursday, June 11, 2009


She chose every twig, blade of grass, and feather thoughtfully interweaving tendrils and twigs. She drops a feather in for comfort. The nest sturdy but delicate. Secure yet cozy. Designed by inspiration.

Built to endure ferocious winds and costly gales, the nest will prove it's strength. Invisible threads well knit, mock the winds that threaten destruction. Gusts and gales tantalize and twist, testing the weary, bending the strong, breaking the weak. The birdhouse that houses this little nest is tossed, torn  completely off it's pole leaving the nest in a precarious position upon the ground. Eventually the wind gives up the fight, claiming victory. Leaving shattered remains.

Scattered are house, pole, and nest upon the ground. Five tawny eggs lay in the hollow of the nest. Momma wren, perched high up in the tree, sings her song with passion. Is she singing praise in spite of her circumstances? Or is she beckoning the angels of heaven, pleading for a rescue? Perhaps it is only a song of desperation and distraction, trying to persuade our focus from her young. I presume it is the passion of praise. 

Soon her home is totally restored. Her house is replaced on the pole, nest safe inside, house tightened and secure, stronger and more prepared for the next indignant, passing storm. 

Her workmanship, the nest, was supreme, inspired, proving her giftedness. The nest survived the gales, though the birdhouse did not. And her praise endured, though she could not promise hope. She did all that she could do. She trusted the Lord with what she could not do. And help was sent her way. 

Life is such, no? We have wisdom for certain things, but there are some things that are just out of our hands. They are out of our power to fix.  Out of our power to understand. We must rely on higher wisdom.  A stronger Being. Our confidence reaches beyond what we know to Who we know. 

Scotty was the angel that came to the rescue of the little wren and her home. He stepped into her disaster and offered rescue and relief. The One that encouraged that little wren to build her nest in our little birdhouse knew that there would be a storm in her future. The One who inspired her talents to build her nest also knew that there would be a man close by that would help her with her cause. He knew that the man would have the compassion and the wisdom to be a help to that little bird. The man could not build the nest, but he could restore the home.

The Lord cares about these things. He notices sparrows that fall to the ground. He notices every sparrow (and wren) that falls to the ground. How much more does He take notice in the storms of our lives? "Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows." Matthew 10:31 

Seasons of storms come. Winds blow, circumstances toss, scatter, and sometimes completely leave destruction in their wake. Could we learn from Momma wren who perched herself on one of the highest branches and stirred up a song in spite of her disaster, reaching for help with praise, hoping when their seemed to be no reason to hope?

The storm has since passed. Momma wren goes in and out of the little house. Her arias ring with vibrato . She has survived a very destructive storm. In spite of it her babies are safe. Her home is secure. She rests, rejoices, basking in her reward.  

Monday, June 8, 2009


His fingerprints remain on every page. I hold it near to my heart feeling that it has absorbed some of his DNA. I carry it with me nearly everywhere I go. Others might think that it is mine and that I am boasting of my diligence to seek my God. It is not my diligence that I am celebrating. This is an inheritance of sorts, my husband's Bible.

The Lord has faithfully breathed on these pages bringing words to life. He scooped rich treasure from the portals of scripture and deposited into my man's heart. The Lord blesses a seeker. He pours generously from the storehouses of heaven into the heart and mind of the man humble enough to ask. My husband is a humble man.

I have been a witness of a metamorphoses of sorts. A good man, brilliant, fun, honest, tender man, become even more wonderful as he has looked into the mirror of these pages and found his own reflection. "Mirror, mirror on the wall".....the reflection has caused an awakening at times. The reflection has birthed pause and prayer. Prayer has brought about change.

The Lord has dealt bountifully with Scotty and I have become the beneficiary of time well invested. Oh, I am not the only one, but I am the most grateful one. 

Scotty has been using a different Bible for some time now. He has read through the "new" one several times and it's pages are also wearing thin. Perhaps the newer one will be passed to one of our children or a grandchild someday. For now I am carrying his first Bible. The first one that he actually read. Other neglected copies remain stoic on the shelf. This one he has meditated over. Pondered. Stained with tears. Passed to me. I feel that I am carrying part of him with me everywhere I go. It's like I am holding onto a relationship between God and man. My man. A relationship that will never break. An eternal bond.

You might argue my case here, saying it is just a Bible. Something temporal. Something that will burn someday. But friends, there are few things in this world that have transformed my world as effectively as this copy of the written Word. So it remains an earthly treasure to me. I have an affinity for it. I will carry it for years to come. As it has carried me.

This treasure will be passed. My fingerprints will be mingled with Scotty's. My tears will leave a traces, and a legacy will be passed. 

Monday, June 1, 2009

Best Friends

*Update on Brock. The chemo and radiation treatments have been stopped for two weeks. They will do an MRI at the end of that time, hoping that it will reveal a shrunken tumor. In the meantime, Brock is beginning intense physical therapy hoping that he will regain some of his motor skills. He is not happy about this. Please be praying for him. He has a lot of pain.  There has been a prayer group established for Brock on Facebook that hosts nearly 500 people that are diligently praying for his recovery. Thank you for joining us in faith believing that nothing is too difficult for our God!!!!

My son, Caleb, has a best friend that is suffering. I called him last Monday where he lives in New York City and asked if he wouldn't pray about making a trip home to see  Brock. He was able to get a ticket and fly into Kansas City the next morning. We then headed to Brock's grandma's house where he is laid up.

I was his driver so I experienced first-hand the emotion of this trip. 

Brock has a brain tumor in the center of his brain that has tentacles that are spreading. He has not talked in six weeks. He has had three holes drilled in his brain. Two to place in shunts, one to drain the blood from a severe hemorrhage. His once healthy form is not immobile and a bit misshapen. He has been taking chemo and radiation treatments. Brock is 22. 

It was hard to have words to say or pray when you are choking back sobs hoping that the one you want to talk to will not be able to tell. It was one of the hardest days ever to see such pain exchanged here. Pain from the heart is always the most difficult. It is hard to understand. You want to explain. You want to believe, but your eyes try to convince your flesh that there is no hope. It is such a fight to keep the faith. There is such a pleading going on inside for God to pour out His mercy.

Years ago Caleb and Brock went on a mission trip to Brazil together. They spent a summer ministering, spreading the gospel, and working alongside one another. Young boys at the time, they were making an impact on the world. They had been friends before that time, but that trip strengthened the tie between them. 

Brock has a fiance that has been having stress related seizures since Brock was diagnosed. I took Caleb to see her after our visit with Brock. She had seizures the whole time we were with her. She is very young to be dealing with all of this. She doesn't really have anyone to support her emotionally right now. Please pray for Nicole as well. I know Caleb was a comfort to her.

A day passed, Caleb prepared himself,  and we stopped back by to visit with Brock on the way to the airport. It was better for Caleb this time. He could talk to Brock. He prayed with him. Brock cried. 

In the picture (from our first visit), Brock's grandma asked if he could shake Caleb's hand. He reached over and took Caleb's hand. They held hands for quite a while. You can see that Caleb is holding back emotion. It was rough.

My dad passed away four years ago from last Saturday, May 30, 2005. Caleb spoke at dad's funeral. He said that speaking at that funeral and seeing Brock the way he is were the two most difficult times of his life so far. I wish I could tell him that it will be the last time it will be hard for him or that it will never get worse than that. 

It was hard seeing Brock that way. I visited with his mom and dad and tried to be a comfort to them and that was difficult too. But seeing my son, Caleb, so distraught was really, really hard.

Thank you to those of you who have added Brock to your prayer list. Please include his sweetheart, Nicole. Did I tell you that Caleb introduced them? He knew that they were the perfect match. 

There is power in agreement, friends!

Thank you,